Cross-media & transmedia

Cross-media & transmedia

"... our core legal team on the project. Throughout, they have showed professionalism, sector expertise and an innovative and proactive approach in providing practical solutions to the many legal issues with which we have been faced."

Neil Blair



If you are a publisher or in the entertainment and media industries, 'cross-media' is nothing new - taking stories and characters and retelling them across films, books, games and other genres.

And as experienced lawyers in the sector, we have the legal toolbox to manage cross-media exploitation through contracts based on artistic copyright in visual characters, literary copyright, trademarks and other rights.

But the digital revolution is blurring the boundaries between the publishing, media and entertainment industries and the traditional allocation of rights between them. For instance, games may feature in online book platforms as well as through games consoles, bringing book and game publishers into the same space.

In turn, this is driving the need for new forms of collaboration and partnership as cross-media and transmedia projects gains pace. Rather than license out rights allowing others to exploit, publishers and agents are looking to actively participate, either alone or through co-ventures, in other sectors such as interactive education, television production, live streaming, mobile apps, live events, games and even merchandising opportunities.

As these boundaries blur, you, as a content owner, will be rethinking your approach to your intellectual property in the characters, stories and themes of the works you own or manage. These rights represent core content which can be delivered through myriad traditional and new, online formats and delivery channels.

You need commercial and legal advisers who understand the 'intellectual property centric, platform neutral' world which is unfolding. And advisers who understand what drives the technology enablers and platform owners you will be working with for successful partnering in 21st century digital deals.

You will want advisers who have successfully crafted 'cross-industry deals' (for example publishers and film companies combining rights to create new products) and who can successfully deliver deals between rights holders and digital platforms for online services, whether streamed, cloud-based or otherwise.

The digital media team at Shoosmiths has spent the last 20 years helping world leading media, entertainment and technology brands build successful strategic partnerships.

The team remains at the cutting edge of developments through leadership in global industry forums and at the heart of international legislative change.

Previous work highlights

  • Pottermore and Sony collaboration
  • TV co-production deal
  • 'Storyworld 2012'